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News Archives - 2005

February 14, 2005

Parker Palmer is 2005 Commencement Speaker

Parker Palmer

Parker Palmer, writer, lecturer, teacher, and activist will be the speaker at the 2005 Augsburg College Commencement ceremony Saturday, May 7.

Parker J. Palmer is a highly respected writer, lecturer, teacher, and activist who focuses on issues in education, community, leadership, spirituality, and social change. His work speaks deeply to people in many walks of life, including public schools, college and universities, religious institutions, corporations, foundations, and grass-roots organizations.

He serves as Senior Associate of the American Association of Higher Education, and Senior Advisor to the Fetzer Institute. He is the founder of the Center for Teacher Formation, which oversees the “Courage to Teach” program for K-12 educators across the country and a parallel program for people in other professions.

He has published a dozen poems, more than one hundred essays, and seven best-selling and award-winning books: A Hidden Wholeness, Let Your Life Speak, The Courage to Teach, The Active Life, To Know as We Are Known, The Company of Strangers, and The Promise of Paradox.

Dr. Palmer’s work has been recognized with eight honorary doctorates, two Distinguished Achievement Awards from the National Educational Press Association, an Award of Excellence from the Associated Church Press, and major grants from the Danforth Foundation, the Lilly Endowment, and the Fetzer Institute.

• In 1993, Dr. Palmer won the national award of the Council of Independent Colleges for Outstanding Contributions to Higher Education.

• In 1998, The Leadership Project, a national survey of 10,000 administrators and faculty, named Dr. Palmer as one of the thirty “most influential senior leaders” in higher education and one of the ten key “agenda-setters” of the past decade: “He has inspired a generation of teachers and reformers with evocative visions of community, knowing, and spiritual wholeness.”

• In 2001, Carleton College gave Dr. Palmer the Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award.

• In 2002, the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education created the “Parker J. Palmer Courage to Teach Award”, given annually to the directors of ten medical residency programs that exemplify patient-centered professionalism in medical education.

• In 2003, the American College Personnel Association named Dr. Palmer a “Diamond Honoree” for outstanding contributions to the field of student affairs.
Parker J. Palmer received the Ph.D. in sociology from the University of California at Berkeley.

A member of the Religious Society of Friends (Quaker), he lives with his wife, Sharon Palmer, in Madison, Wisconsin.